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Wine, glorious wine. From a cold, crisp glass of white on a sunny day to a hearty red by the fire in winter, this is the connoisseur’s tipple of choice. The only trouble is, although many people enjoy the complex flavors and aromas that this grape-based beverage boasts, enthusiasts often feel guilty when they pop a cork and pour themselves a glass. After all, everyone knows the health risks associated with consuming too much alcohol.

However, when drunk in moderation, wine can in fact be good for people. So, next time you reach for your favorite bottle or take advantage of the impressive wine deals now available, you needn’t feel bad!

A new scientific study has found that drinking a glass of red wine could actually reduce your chance of piling on the pounds

Warding Off Dementia

Everyone knows that too much booze can result in short-term memory loss. However, when consumed sensibly, it seems wine can actually have the opposite effect and preserve people’s memories. A team from Loyola University Medical Center analyzed data from scientific papers on red wine since 1977. They found a statistically significantly lower risk of dementia among regular, moderate red wine drinkers in 14 of 19 countries.

According to those behind the research, the resveratrol in wine keeps blood vessels open and flexible since it reduces the stickiness of blood platelets. As a result, this maintains a good supply of blood to the brain.

Boosting the Immune System

We all want to avoid getting sick and, who knows, maybe there are some of us out there that want to live forever. Wine can’t help us with the latter, but it can certainly lend a hand with the former. A British study found that people who drink roughly one glass of wine per day reduced their risk of infection by Helicobacter pylori bacteria by 11%. This nasty little bacterium is a major cause of stomach ulcers, gastritis, and stomach cancer. Meanwhile, Spanish research has uncovered as little as half a glass to help to protect people from food poisoning caused by bacteria such as salmonella.

Building the Bones

Then there are the benefits for the bones. According to research, on average, women who drink moderately have a higher bone mass than non-drinkers. This may be because alcohol appears to boost estrogen levels, this hormone slowing the body’s destruction of old bone more than it slows the production of new bone.

Keeping Diabetes at Bay

Diabetes is becoming increasingly common in developed countries. However, experts have discovered that resveratrol (there it is again!) improves people’s sensitivity to insulin, thus lowering their risk of developing this blood sugar problem. Meanwhile, a ten-year study conducted by a team at Harvard Medical School discovered that premenopausal women who drink one or two glasses of wine a day are 40% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes than women who don’t drink.

Complimentary Bites

Now that you can feel that bit better about sipping a glass of your favorite wine, you might be looking for some healthy foods that go perfectly with the beverage. Red wine is a great accompaniment to a range of meals, including wholesome soups and stews. A light red, such as a pinot noir, works superbly with fish.

If you fancy something sweet, why not enjoy red wine with dark chocolate? This tasty treat is also known to have various health benefits.

Stronger bones, a more robust immune system and a mind that can stand up to the threat of dementia … just some of the wonders that a glass or two of wine can work. Then there’s the fact that it can decrease your exposure to potential diabetes. Maybe instead of an apple a day, it will be a glass of wine that keeps the doctor away!

Fiona Griffin is a wine connoisseur who loves a drop of merlot. Along with her glasses of wine, she likes to enjoy the crime fiction of Lynda La Plante.

Chinese billionaire Lam Kok is feared dead in a helicopter crash that happened as he was surveying his newly-purchased vineyard in south-west France.

The helicopter, carrying the billionaire and his 12-year-old son, the chateau’s ex-owner James Gregoire and an interpreter, came down in the river Dordogne.

Police have found the wreckage but have not yet been able to locate all of the missing passengers.

The sale of the Bordeaux vineyard had received much local publicity.

It was believed to be the biggest investment yet by a Chinese businessman in the Bordeaux wine region.

Lam Kok and James Gregoire pictured with their wives while celebrating the sale of the chateau

Lam Kok and James Gregoire pictured with their wives while celebrating the sale of the chateau

There had been celebrations at the 16th Century Chateau de la Riviere estate on Friday when its sale for an undisclosed sum to Lam Kok was confirmed.

The 46-year-old Hong Kong-based tycoon, who specializes in fine teas, had plans to turn the 160-acre estate into a tea and wine tasting centre.

After the introductions and a news conference, the former owner, James Gregoire, offered to give Lam Kok an aerial tour of the estate by helicopter.

An AFP photographer at the event said Lam Kok’s wife pulled out at the last moment, saying she was “scared of helicopters”.

James Gregoire flew the helicopter; a short time later locals reported seeing it crash into the river.

The Chinese embassy in Paris is sending consular officials to the scene.

China has recently become the largest export destination for Bordeaux wines and over the past four years, dozens of French chateaux have been bought by Chinese investors.


Duck Dynasty stars Willie and Korie Robertson and principals of the sprawling Trinchero Family Estates winery toasted their new joint wine label Tuesday at a launch party in St. Helena.

The Duck Commander Wines label is “a great opportunity to join with a tremendous success story – the Robertson family,” said Roger Trinchero, the winery’s chief executive officer, at the party with about 75 staff and family members, local distributors and guests.

Roger Trinchero said while the business aspect of the new label was attractive, it was the chemistry between the two families that was compelling for him.

“They come from the same sort of background that we did – plus they are really great people,” Roger Trinchero said.

Willie and Korie Robertson and principals of the sprawling Trinchero Family Estates winery toasted their new joint wine label at a launch party in St. Helena

Willie and Korie Robertson and principals of the sprawling Trinchero Family Estates winery toasted their new joint wine label at a launch party in St. Helena

“We share the same values,” he added.

“Not to mention that the brand itself has tremendous potential.”

The Duck Commander by Robertson Family Wines feature a Red Blend, a Chardonnay and a Pink Moscato.

The wines, which sell at a mid-range price point of around $10 per bottle, are currently available at Wal-Mart, and will be at stores nationally by January.

Bob Torkelson, Trinchero’s COO, said a representative from the Robertson clan approached him about the possibility of producing their wine label.

He said the Trinchero family was “thrilled” to be associated with the project – both for business reasons and because they resonated with the Robertsons. The two families shared a private dinner Monday night at the Trinchero estate north of St. Helena.

“To be associated with the most popular reality TV show ever, plus to be with a great family group, really makes it a win-win for us,” Bob Torkelson said.